The pandemic could create 45 million new poor in Latin America

La pandémie pourrait créer 45 millions de nouveaux pauvres en Amérique latine

The pandemic of COVID-19 could switch in poverty, 45 million people currently contained in the social classes, intermediate in Latin America and the Caribbean, the region with the most unequal in the world, warned on Thursday the united nations.

“In a context of inequality, already acute, high rates of informal work and the fragmentation of health services, the populations and individuals most vulnerable are once again the most affected,” said in a press release the secretary-general of the united nations, Antonio Guterres.

Become the epicenter of the pandemic, the region has more than three million cases of COVID-19, of which more than half in Brazil, according to a report drawn up this week by AFP from official sources.

The other most affected countries are Mexico, Peru, and Chile.

According to the head of the united nations, who published a synthesis on the impact of the pandemic in Latin America, the fall in GDP for this region will rise to 9.1 percent, the worst in a century.

The economic impact will be all the more devastating as the pandemic hits the region after seven years of low growth, and then that deep inequalities still persist, with millions of people without medical coverage, or drinking water, noted the UN.

The united Nations expect that the poverty rate increases of 7% in 2020, an increase of 45 million people, for a total of 230 million poor people, representing 37.2% of the population living in Latin America and the Caribbean.

Extreme poverty is also expected to increase by 4.5%, some 28 million people, to reach a total of 96 million people (15.5% of the population). These people will be ” threatened with starvation “, said to journalists Alicia Barcena, a person in charge of the UN.

The UN estimates that to cope with the crisis and help the poor, governments must provide a basic income and emergency grants against hunger. In the region, this implies an average of 140 dollars per month and per person, says the Organization.

Antonio Guterres asked the international community to “provide liquidity, financial assistance and debt relief” in Latin America and the Caribbean.

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